Teen murder suspect took 'turn for the worse'

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by LINDA BRILL / KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on March 3, 2014 at 6:11 PM

Updated Monday, Mar 3 at 8:34 PM

A 17-year-old Seattle high school student suspected in last week's shooting death of a Greenwood man will continue to be held in juvenile detention.

Byron White, a student at Ballard High School, waived his first court appearance Monday. The judge ordered he remain in juvenile detention pending the filing charges.

White is expected to be charged as an adult with murder on Wednesday.

A KING 5 reporter spoke to Byron White's mother.

"Byron was not homeless. He came from a two parent background. He was a good student and a respectful student," Yvette Watkins said. "We gave him all that he needed."   

"During the last four to five months he took a turn for the worse. He started missing classes and I was worried about it," she added. "I tried to steer him in the right direction."

"A piece of my heart has been snatched out of my chest."

At Ballard High School Monday, officials announced the weekend arrest of one of their football players.

"They pretty much said something happened with a student and you'd probably hear about it on the news," said one student.

The school confirms that White is a Ballard senior. Prosecutors say he'll be charged as an adult.

"People who hadn't heard about it were definitely shocked," said another student.

White was arrested at Sea-Tac Airport Saturday, just before trying to board a flight to Atlanta. When he was arrested, police say he admitted to shooting David Peterson.

Peterson was out for a walk when White tried to steal his phone. Peterson called 911, then White shot him and took the phone.

When officer arrived, they found Peterson's body near a busy shopping area in the Greenwood neighborhood.

At the juvenile courthouse Monday, White waived his appearance in front of the judge.

Peterson's wife and brother came to the courtroom to see justice play out.

"It's our responsibility to see this through. It's a significant tragedy in our life. We're not going to just walk away from it," said Greg Peterson, victim's brother.

Ballard High School has counselors this week available to students.

 


 

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